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Exeter is master of the pridge: I can tell your 100 majesty, the duke is a prave man.

K. Hen. What men have you lost, Fluellen?

Flu. The perdition of th' athversary hath been very great, reasonable great: marry, for my part, I think the duke hath lost never a man, but one that is like to be executed for robbing a church, one Bardolph, if your majesty know the man: his face is all bubukles, and whelks, and knobs, and flames o' fire: and his lips blows at his nose, and it is like a coal of fire, sometimes plue and 110 sometimes red; but his nose is executed, and his fire's out.

K. Hen. We would have all such offenders so cut off and we give express charge, that in our marches through the country, there be nothing compelled from the villages, nothing taken but paid for, none of the French upbraided or abused in disdainful language; for when lenity and cruelty play for a kingdom, the gentler gamester is the soonest winner.

Enter MONTJOY.

Mont. You know me by my habit.

K. Hen. Well then I know thee: what shall
I know of thee?

Mont. My master's mind.

K. Hen. Unfold it.

Mont. Thus says my king: Say thou to Harry of England: Though we seemed dead, we did but

120

Ireland, and are in any case significant of Shakespeare's judgment upon the harsh policy commonly pursued there.

120. Tucket, trumpet-blast.

sleep advantage is a better soldier than rashness. Tell him we could have rebuked him at Harfleur, but that we thought not good to bruise an injury till it were full ripe: now we speak upon our cue, 130 and our voice is imperial: England shall repent his folly, see his weakness, and admire our sufferance. Bid him therefore consider of his ransom; which must proportion the losses we have borne, the subjects we have lost, the disgrace we have digested; which in weight to re-answer, his pettiness would bow under. For our losses, his exchequer is too poor; for the effusion of our blood, the muster of his kingdom too faint a number; and for our disgrace, his own person, kneeling at our 140 feet, but a weak and worthless satisfaction. Το this add defiance: and tell him, for conclusion, he hath betrayed his followers, whose condemnation is pronounced. So far my king and master; so much my office.

K. Hen. What is thy name? I know thy quality.

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Mont. Montjoy.

K. Hen. Thou dost thy office fairly. Turn thee
back,

And tell thy king I do not seek him now;
But could be willing to march on to Calais
Without impeachment: for, to say the sooth,
Though 'tis no wisdom to confess so much
Unto an enemy of craft and vantage,
My people are with sickness much enfeebled,
My numbers lessened, and those few I have

127. advantage, favourable opportunity.

130. upon our cue, i. e. at the due moment.

136. in weight to re-answer,

to repay in full measure.

150

151. impeachment, hindrance. 153. of craft and vantage, who has both a natural superiority and the cunning to make the best of it.

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Almost no better than so many French;

Who when they were in health, I tell thee, herald,

I thought upon one pair of English legs

Did march three Frenchmen.

Yet, forgive me,

This your air of France Hath blown that vice in me; I must repent. Go therefore, tell thy master here I am; My ransom is this frail and worthless trunk, My army but a weak and sickly guard ; Yet, God before, tell him we will come on, Though France himself and such another neighbour Stand in our way. There's for thy labour, Montjoy. Go, bid thy master well advise himself:

If we may pass, we will; if we be hinder'd,

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We shall your tawny ground with your red blood 170 Discolour and so, Montjoy, fare you well.

The sum of all our answer is but this:

We would not seek a battle, as we are ;

Nor, as we are, we say we will not shun it
So tell your master.

Mont. I shall deliver so.
highness.

Thanks to your

[Exit.

Glou. I hope they will not come upon us now.
K. Hen. We are in God's hand, brother, not in
theirs.

March to the bridge; it now draws toward night:
Beyond the river we 'll encamp ourselves,
And on to-morrow bid them march away.

[Exeunt.

180.

that the king gave the herald ' a princely reward.'

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SCENE VII. The French camp, near Agincourt.

Enter the CONSTABLE OF FRANCE, the LORD RAMBURES, ORLEANS, DAUPHIN, with others.

Con. Tut! I have the best armour of the world. Would it were day!

Orl. You have an excellent armour; but let my horse have his due.

Con. It is the best horse of Europe.

Orl. Will it never be morning?

Dau. My Lord of Orleans, and my lord high constable, you talk of horse and armour?

Orl. You are as well provided of both as any prince in the world.

Dau. What a long night is this! I will not change my horse with any that treads but on four pasterns. Ça, ha! he bounds from the earth, as if his entrails were hairs; le cheval volant, the Pegasus, chez les narines de feu! When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes.

It is a

Orl. He's of the colour of the nutmeg. Dau. And of the heat of the ginger. beast for Perseus: he is pure air and fire; and the dull elements of earth and water never appear in him, but only in patient stillness while his rider mounts him he is indeed a horse; and all other jades you may call beasts.

13. pasterns; for Ff 'postures.' ib. as if his entrails were

hairs, like a tennis-ball,

Cf.

Much Ado, iii. 2. 47.

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18. the pipe of Hermes; with which he charmed Argos.

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Con. Indeed, my lord, it is a most absolute and excellent horse.

Dau. It is the prince of palfreys; his neigh is like the bidding of a monarch and his countenance 30 enforces homage.

Dau. Nay, the man hath no wit that cannot, from the rising of the lark to the lodging of the lamb, vary deserved praise on my palfrey: it is a theme as fluent as the sea: turn the sands into eloquent tongues, and my horse is argument for them all 'tis a subject for a sovereign to reason on, and for a sovereign's sovereign to ride on; and for the world, familiar to us and unknown, to 40 lay apart their particular functions and wonder at him. I once writ a sonnet in his praise and began thus: "Wonder of nature,'

Orl. I have heard a sonnet begin so to one's mistress.

Dau. Then did they imitate that which I composed to my courser, for my horse is my mistress. Orl. Your mistress bears well.

Dau. Me well; which is the prescript praise and perfection of a good and particular mistress. Con. Nay, for methought yesterday your mistress shrewdly shook your back.

Dau. So perhaps did yours.

Con. Mine was not bridled.

Dau. O then belike she was old and gentle; and you rode, like a kern. of Ireland, your French hose off, and in your strait strossers.

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Con. You have good judgement in horsemanship. Dau. Be warned by me, then they that ride 60

in tight trousers; i.e. with none. The 'French hose' were wide and loose.

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